James Watt, Instrument Maker

[Part of a series: The Age of Steam] A New Synthesis In the eighteenth century, new lines of communication and new alliances were forming between the world of the artisan and craftsman on the one hand, and the world of the “schoolmen,” the university scholars, steeped in abstract knowledge, on the other. This convergence arguably… Continue reading James Watt, Instrument Maker

The Triumvirate: Coal, Iron, and Steam

[Part of a series: The Age of Steam] The steam engine might have amounted to relatively little if not for its two compatriots, coal and iron. Together they formed a kind of triumvirate, ruling over an industrial empire. Or perhaps an ecological metaphor is more appropriate – a symbiosis among three species, each nourishing one… Continue reading The Triumvirate: Coal, Iron, and Steam